#108 Boston College: 2010-11 Basketball Preview
Overall Rank: #108
Conference Rank: #10 Atlantic Coast Conference
2009-10: 15-16, 6-10
2009-10 postseason: none
Coach: Steve Donahue (First season at Boston College, 146-138 overall)
It took Boston College an entire season, at least, to get over the loss of Tyrese Rice. Despite returning every other starter last season, the Eagles went from a 22 win season to a sub .500 record in 2009-2010. That cost Coach Al Skinner his job and BC went after Coach Steve Donahue who previously took Cornell to three consecutive NCAA appearances.
Key Losses: F Evan Ravenel, F Tyler Roche, G Rakim Sanders
Once again there is not a lot of turnover on the roster, but replacing Rakim Sanders and his 11.3 points per game will be an issue. That is why the two newcomers, who both signed after Coach Donahue took over the team, are guards. Neither are superb recruits by Atlantic Coast Conference standards, but Gabriel Moton and Danny Rubin both fill Boston College’s needs. Moton is a 6-2 point guard who can do a little scoring on the side and Rubin is a 6-6 wing who can hit the long ball and use his size to attack the basket.
The problem last season was not replacing Rice’s scoring, but replacing his ball handling duties. Biko Paris was supposed to be that guy, but by the end of the season Reggie Jackson was bringing the ball up the floor. It is not a case of Paris performing poorly, since he did dish out 4.1 assists per game and kept the turnovers at a somewhat respectable 2.5 per contest. The issue was the offense just never clicked when he was running the show. Things really did not get that much better with Jackson. Ideally, especially without Sanders on the team, Paris can run the point and Jackson can spend time off the ball where he can do his scoring. Jackson was second on the team with 12.9 points per game last year and added 4.5 assists and 5.7 rebounds. Jackson can do a little bit of everything and having him not worrying about being the sole ball handler on the team would help his offense. The other returning option is Dallas Elmore. The 6-5 junior is not much of a shooter, but he can use his 6-5 frame to score around the basket and his depth will be needed at the two guard spot.
The frontcourt returns starters Corey Raji and Josh Southern. Raji developed into a consistent interior scorer last season and averaged 11.4 points and 5.8 rebounds per game. At 6-6 he may seem a little undersized for a power forward in the ACC, but he makes up for it with his toughness. The Eagles will need a strong senior season from Raji to compete with most teams in the conference. While Raji gets the points, Josh Southern creates space. The 6-10, 263 pound center is not a particularly good scorer, but he is a decent rebounder and his presence alone makes it difficult for the opposition to get into the paint. Cortney Dunn will have to see more playing time at the four and five spots after averaging 13.3 minutes per game during his junior season. He is rarely a threat to score, but he will do the dirty work in the paint and is an experienced option off of the bench.
Who to Watch:
Joe Trapani can handle some minutes at the four spot as well, especially in a Coach Donahue offense that traditionally has a power forward that can shoot the ball. Trapani, a former Catamount of Vermont, led the team in scoring, rebounding, blocked shots and three-pointers made during his junior campaign. The 6-8, 232 pound Madison, Connecticut product is a nightmare to guard because of his size, quickness and outside shooting ability. The fact that he can get into the paint and do such a great job on the glass makes the frontcourt surprisingly good.
Assuming the freshmen are not ready to contribute major minutes right away, this is the same team as last year but without a double digit scorer in Sanders. A year older and a year wiser can only take Boston College so far. There should be improvement if Paris can take over the point guard duties and be the unquestioned floor leader, but that still will not be enough for the Eagles to make an NCAA appearance…unless Coach Donahue has a few tricks up his sleeve.
Projected Post-season Tournament: CBI/CIT
Projected Starting Five:
Biko Paris, Senior, Guard, 4.8 ppg
Reggie Jackson, Junior, Guard, 12.9 ppg
Joe Trapani, Senior, Forward, 14.1 ppg
Corey Raji, Senior, Forward, 11.4 ppg
Josh Southern, Senior, Center, 4.4 ppg
Next Top 144 Teams